I posted a list of expected visitors for Michigan’s BBQ at the Big House (LINK). If you look at last year’s list (LINK), Michigan landed Quintel Kent, Mike Morris, and Mike Sainristil for 2019 after the BBQ…and that doesn’t include Braiden McGregor, Kalel Mullings, Osman Savage, Cornell Wheeler, and Zak Zinter from 2020.
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Name: Joel Honigford Height: 6’6″ Weight: 295 lbs. High school: Sugarcreek (OH) Garaway Position: Offensive guard Class: Redshirt sophomore Jersey number: #59 Last year: I ranked Honigford #86 and said he would be a backup offensive guard (LINK). He played in two games. TTB Rating: 84
There’s a reason you recruit a lot of linemen (take notes, Rich Rodriguez), and that’s because you want veterans to be available in case an opportunity opens up for playing time. Over the past couple years, players like Ja’Raymond Hall, James Hudson, Juwann Bushell-Beatty, and Nolan Ulizio have all departed. Jim Harbaugh has done a good job of increasing numbers on the offensive line, meaning people like Honigford, Stephen Spanellis, and Chuck Filiaga are still around if they’re needed.
Four-fifths of Michigan’s offensive line is basically decided going into 2019, with Jon Runyan, Jr., Ben Bredeson, Cesar Ruiz, and Michael Onwenu seeming to have locked up their spots. The competition is still open at one tackle position, though, with Andrew Stueber and Jalen Mayfield both vying to start. Honigford has been repping at offensive guard, and word out of the spring is that he has taken some big strides over the past year. Barring injury, there’s no chance for him to start in 2019, but he will be jostling with the aforementioned Spanellis and Filiaga to be the first offensive lineman off the bench. Spanellis appears to be the top backup interior guy and has the ability to play center, too, but we should start to see Honigford emerge in 2019. Both Bredeson and Onwenu will graduate after 2019, so the top backup guards will probably be your starters in 2020.
Name: Quinn Nordin Height: 6’1″ Weight: 206 lbs. High school: Rockford (MI) Rockford Position: Kicker Class: Redshirt junior Jersey number: #3 Last year: I ranked Nordin #12 and said he would be the start placekicker (LINK). He was 45/46 on extra points and 11/16 on field goals with a long of 50. TTB Rating: 89
I will be the first to admit that I have no idea how this kicking situation will play out in 2019. Nordin was the starting kicker in 2017 and had a very good season. Things started off pretty well in 2018, too, but then Nordin seemed to lose his mojo. By the end of the year, he had ceded duties to Jake Moody; Nordin played against Ohio State only for an onside kick attempt, and he didn’t play in the bowl game against Florida.
Only the coaching staff knows how this will shake out, and even they might discover some extra turbulence. Nordin could do anything from handle every kickoff, extra point, and field goal attempt . . . to literally never stepping on the field in 2019. Either way, the Wolverines have two scholarships devoted to place kickers for 2019 and they probably don’t want to repeat that again in 2020, so this could be a make-or-break season for Nordin. If he permanently loses the job to Moody, he might end up in the Ex-Wolverine Updates.